Tokyo: A 102-year-old man has killed
himself in a newly-declared no-go zone around Japan's crippled
nuclear plant because he was depressed at having to leave his
home, a report said on Thursday.
The centenarian, the oldest resident of Iitate
village, 40 kilometres from the Fukushima Daiichi plant, took
his own life after talking to his family about evacuation,
Jiji Press reported, citing local officials.
"Before the suicide, the oldest resident of the
community discussed evacuation plans with his family,
municipal officials said, adding that they suspect the man was
depressed at the idea that he would have to leave his place,"
Iitate was one of a number of areas the central
government declared off-limits earlier this week because of
concerns over the effect of long-term exposure to radiation
from the leaking nuclear plant.
Thousands had already been evacuated from a
20-kilometre exclusion zone around the plant, which began
spewing toxic radiation after its cooling systems were
disabled by the March 11 tsunami that hit Japan.
The amended order, which the government said would
take effect within the next month, will leave many thousands
An official from Iitate village confirmed that a
102-year-old man living in the area had died.
"However, we have not confirmed how he was found
dead or if he actually committed suicide," the official said.
First Published: Thursday, April 14, 2011, 18:44